Sunday, September 30, 2012

Another 60km+

Distance 62.8km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3716.1km] Week38

Tuesday, 25-Sep. 11km

Very enjoyable run at a good pace. My left calf was still a bit sore from the gym on Sunday but it didn't hamper my running. Lots of other runners out this evening, the warmer weather has seen them emerge from winter hibernation. I had to hurry up on tonight's run as I had to be leaving for the cinema at 6.45pm. I ran the last 2km along the beach, along the high tide line. There were too many piles of broken shells to put in a decent time but I did get my heart rate up above my aerobic zone.

Wednesday, 26-Sep. 13.5km

A beach run into the wind this evening as I ran up to Semaphore, the wind speed recorded at the airport was around 30km/h.
I should pick some different routes when it is windy such as along the river or around West Lakes, I have been stuck in a bit of a running route rut in that I always head out towards the beach after work. The tide was high again so I was running on soft sand and sand with a harder crust. The temperature got up to 27C today but was cooler by the beach, it still sapped my energy a little more than usual. On the way back I could feel the first pangs of hunger so I didn't extend the run any more than I had to.

Thursday, 27-Sep. 11.5km

Last of the warm weather days so I made the best of it and did a run along the road from Grange to West Beach. I felt tired this time, I think I may not have fully recovered from the other runs as my heart rate seemed higher than I expected. My soles felt a over sensitive as well and I seemed to find every small stone and bit of grit today. That may have been because my legs were tired they were more tense and so I landed with more force on all the small bits on the ground. The temperature will be dropping by around 10C in the next few days and the wind will pick up again, I may do a shorter run on Saturday.

Saturday, 29-Sep. 19km

Back to winter again today. Although it was mainly bright with a few clouds around there was cold southerly wind blowing. On the way up to Largs jetty it was behind me so I couldn't feel it, as soon as I moved in an 180degree arc to run back to Semaphore the chill cut right through me. I didn't fancy the idea of having to run 10km into this chilly wind so I thought of an alternative way back along the Military Road that would hopefully be more sheltered. I ran along the foreshore path then down onto the pavement along the main road, it cut the wind down substantially. I did manage to stand on a stone on my achy left foot which made it throb, it eased off and I continued running. After around 4km I thought I could run up onto the upper road, Seaview and along, but I found the path much rougher and my feet were feeling tender so I headed back onto the beach where I ran the last few km to the car. I need to rest my foot a little, I think the shift up to longer distances has irritated it.

Sunday, 30-Sep. 7.8km

After a small amount of rain just after 9am things began to get brighter and the difference at this time of year when compared to say July is that my feet don't freeze as there is more of the suns stored energy in the pavements and it feels warm. I did an easy run today, no stopwatch or keeping an eye on my heart rate, just run and stop anytime I wanted to see what was going on around me. I didn't pass any other runners along the lake but I did have a runner behind me, I slowed down for a while to see if he could catch up but he was a bit too slow for me so I took off again.
After the run, a short gym session then called in on an old work colleague to find out what life was like with his new employer. I need to find a new line of work, at the moment though I'm not sure in what area though.


Monday, September 24, 2012

Gradually warming up

Distance 54.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3653.3km] Week37

Tuesday, 18-Sep. 13km

Nice clear day and around 18C for the top in the early afternoon. By the time I hit the beach the temperature had dropped slightly and the sea breeze had picked up. I ran with the wind towards Semaphore this evening, the tide was high so I had plenty of soft sand and broken shells to negotiate. I ran at a nice easy pace, enjoying the evening sun as it slowly made its way towards the western horizon. At first I thought I would run on to the jetty but I could tell by the height of the sun that if I added an extra 15 minutes onto my run the sun would be down and the wind would feel all the colder. I ran back along the footpath then back onto the beach before Escourt House. By the time I got back to Grange jetty I was feeling quite hungry so I didn't run any further past my car. I called it a day at 13km.

Thursday 20-Sep. 11km

Spring is the best time of year. The ground has the warmth to feel the textures of the surfaces I'm running on but the dangerous foot burning heat has not arrived yet. A good run this evening. The wind was a westerly rather than blowing in my face or back. I've noticed that as the season turned it was like a signal to the runners to re-emerge from their winter sleep. I've been running all through the winter and its been mainly solitary but now, there are runners everywhere. On the way back from West Beach a couple of runners passed me going quite fast, I tried to catch them but I was outpaced, they started to increase the distance. I think they must have been doing some fast paced training as I passed them 1km further on as they stopped. I need to run with the faster crowd to boost my speed. I did the last 2km along the beach at high tide, dodging in and out of the waves and still did a good 9:40m for the distance.

Saturday, 22-Sep. 22km

What a battle against the wind today! A weather change was heading in and as always in Adelaide there is a northerly wind before the change. It was forecast to be a warm 27C today. I set out for my run at 9.15am running north to Semaphore then on to Largs. As soon as I set off I was running into a headwind and easterly blowing at around 40km/h (these are from the Adelaide Airport observations), on the beach where there is no shelter from the wind the gusts were up to 50km/h. Even though I was trying to keep a relaxed pace my heart rate was up near 140bpm. I ran 10km into this wind before turning around and heading back. Now you would thing that having the wind behind you would be a good thing, usually it is when it is a gentle breeze but when it is a strong gusty wind it blows you forward  and upsets my rhythm. My usual gentle landing is compromised and I land heavier. That's not a big problem on the beach but it still makes my feet feel the friction more. I had intended a 25km run today but the windy conditions sapped my energy at the end. I turned around at Henley jetty and walked back to the car.

Sunday, 23-Sep. 8.2km

I wake up on Sunday morning and the wind is still blowing, but thankfully the colder air has not arrived yet. Running around the lake is more sheltered than running along the beach but saying that is was still very windy on the return half of my run. It was a westerly wind and was due to turn into a colder southerly by the afternoon. The run went well, I didn't sprint over the last kilometre as I would have been running into a headwind so I just took it easy.


Sunday, September 16, 2012

Highest KM in 20+ years

Distance 64.7km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3599.1km] Week36

Monday, 10-Sep. 7km

Only time for a short run this evening as I had a movie night in the city later on. I ran along the road from the sailing club to the river outlet then ran back along the beach. I put in a good effort all the way up the beach, the heart rate monitor was beeping in the last kilometre as I pushed out of the aerobic zone. These are the kind of workouts that runners hate, were the body is shouting at the brain to stop or slow down. The more of this kind of running I can manage the better the racing will become.

Tuesday, 11-Sep. 13.5km

First of the warm spring days. The temperature got up to 24C today, it would have been a bit cooler by the time I got to the beach but I noticed the difference. I had some dryness in my throat and I felt more fatigue. I kept a steady heart rate of around 130 bpm and tried to run in an efficient energy saving manner. I started to feel hunger creeping into my stomach on the way back. I had intended to run around 16km but the sun was starting to set when I got level with my parked car, I would have had to continue running for another 12 minute and I didn't have the energy.

Thursday, 13-Sep. 11km.

Lots of runners out this evening, all getting in their last training before the 12km City-Bay on the Sunday.
A friend of mine is running in it so I'll probably go down and have a coffee with him after the race. He is suffering with a calf injury at the moment which he is hoping will dissipate before Sunday. Calf injuries take a while to work through.
I'm glad we have the extra daylight at this time of year, I don't have to rush out of work in order to get to the beach before 5pm. At the moment the sunset is at 6:07pm.
A good paced run at the top of my aerobic band with a burst at the end as I chased down a hare. As I was running along the pavement just north of Henley Square a girl running at a good pace was running in the opposite direction, she was running quite fast as she must have turned around at the jetty and caught me up around 50m from where the path leaves the road. That was the challenge! I trailed behind by around 10m managing to match her pace. I had to slow going across the rough bitumen near the sailing club but then it was concrete all the way back to the car. A 500m chase. I caught up around 100m from the end then took off at full speed, pushing the heart rate up to 150bpm. I reached the coffee shop and slowed. The hare was about 20m behind. I was going to say "Hi, good race" but she had a bit of pained expression on her face so I let it go.

Saturday, 14-Sep. 25km.

The longest run for well over 20 years. I set off at around 9.30am, the tide was at it's low point for the day. It was warm enough for shorts and T-shirt, a slight northerly breeze, not enough to chill me on the run. I ran north to Semaphore jetty and the further to Largs jetty another 1.58km. I felt a bit sluggish at the start as my breakfast was still hanging around. I felt ok by the time I got back to Semaphore jetty to do a stretch along the footpath, the extra 3km would start to affect me in the last part of the run. My feet felt a bit tender at times, as I started to tire and didn't land them as gently as I could. I was glad to get back to the car at the end, I had put sunscreen on but I was still out for over 2 hours so I have to be careful.

Sunday, 15-Sep. 8.2km

My usual morning run was moved to a late afternoon run as I went to watch the City to Bay run in Glenelg during the morning. I got to Glenelg and parked the car a couple of kilometres away, it began to rain as I walked to the main street where the runners would run down. My timing was good, the rain stopped and the sun came out and shortly after the first runner came racing down the street with quite a large gap between himself and the next runner. The first runners had a great style and as more and more runners came past the style became more varied from neutral to bizarre. Also the expressions on faces looked more pained in the slower runners.
The weather picked up in the afternoon after another bout of rain as I walked back from the race. I did my usual 8.2km loop at an even pace, no racing at the end this time. This was my highest distance week in many years.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

3 Years of Barefoot Running

Distance xxkm [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3534.4km] Week36

Monday, 3-Sep. 13km

For a change, I had a beach run this evening, I was feeling tired after the first day of the working week so a relaxed run would be a good way of getting a few kilometres in and not exhausting myself further. The tide was almost at the high point for the day so I had soft sand to run on and lots of shells. I started the run lacking enthusiasm but by the end I felt much better. For most of the run my heart rate would have been under 130 bpm so it was good aerobic base building.
There was a fantastic sunset on the way back and as I got back to my car I sat for a while looking out to sea as the orange glow slowly faded. The first bout of warm weather has brought droves of runners out, many probably shaping up for the City-Bay run in a couple of weeks.

Friday, 7-Sep. 10km

After a week of wintery weather that put a stop to my running I managed to get out on the Friday. It was still cold and there was a strong westerly wind whipping up the sea into a frothy frenzy. I ran along the beach tonight, from Grange Sailing club to Grange jetty then back down the beach to the river then back up, into the strengthening wind, to the West Lakes inlet pipe before turning back to the car. What a relief to get out of the icy wind and into the warmth of my car. So, just because we are in September doesn't mean spring is here to stay.

Saturday, 8-Sep. 16km

Again, I hoped the cold windy weather would have blown itself out and be replaced by calm sunny weather. As I was getting ready to go out it looked bright and didn't feel cold outside. I tossed up about just wearing shorts and T-shirt rather than leggings and long sleeved top, I went for the latter in the end using the logic that it is better to be warm and take something off than cold with nothing to put on.
I'm glad I did. I got to the beach at 9am and there was the westerly wind again, foamy surf, it felt cold. In the first few kilometres the sun sneaked out and I thought the suncream might be worthwhile after all. After another couple of kilometres I noticed the low black clouds out to the west, it was raining out at sea and it was heading my way. I thought I might be able to out run it but it came in fast, the air chilled and the rain started to fall, blowing sideways with the wind. I got a good soaking but missed the bulk of it which was a bit further north. I reached Semaphore jetty then ran back along the wet footpath, my feet were slapping a bit too much, they were cold and numb. I headed back to the beach after a couple of km. After another 3km I felt sapped of energy. I hap intended to run 22km today but there are certain days when you just have to throw in the towel. I got to my parked car after running 16km feeling exhausted, I didn't have another 7km in me today.

Sunday, 9-Sep. 8.2km

I believe it would have been about this date 3 years ago that I first took up my quest of changing my running style and running without shoes. I have covered quite a distance since then. My running is mostly free from injuries now except for the odd tight calf or some minor thing. So despite the Professor of Sports Science at Uni SA saying that barefoot running will cause injuries, I think the onus is on him to prove that shoes stop runners getting injured. Of course he can't do that because the data shows that runners in shoes (myself being one) get injured at a much greater frequency than is acknowledged
Todays run was done in spring sunshine nice and relaxed. The ground felt perfect under foot not cold and not too hot. Now that I can get more ground feedback from the feet without them being too cold I will look to get more speed in my running. First objective is to get the distance to 60km per week.


Sunday, September 2, 2012

15 Minutes of Fame (or Less)

Distance 52.2km [total: minimalist 285.6km: Barefoot 3534.4km] Week35

Monday, 27-Aug. 11km

A cloudy but calm day, I was holding out for a 20C day but we got only 18C. The local newspaper published a brief article on my barefoot running and of course an expert had to come out swinging and scream "fad' but then maybe shoes are the fad seeing as they have been around for a fraction of time that humans have been in existence.
I did a relaxed 11km, or tried to keep at a slower heart rate, it does creep up to the upper end of my aerobic range. I want to try to keep the the 10/90 rule 10% anaerobic and 90% aerobic. So that means if I'm running 50km per week I don't want to run more than 5km above the 137 BPM rate. If I can increase my aerobic base to 60km then 6km can be at race pace. To run a 10km at race pace I need to get up to 100km per week.

Thursday, 30-Aug. 11km

A battle against the 30km/h winds this afternoon. I'm hoping that this will be one of the last days of winter type weather. As I've mentioned in the past, now that I have altered my running form so my foot doesn't land miles in front of me, I no longer find it tiring running into a headwind, I just put a little more lean in and let gravity pull me forwards. I've not found the ground too cold in the last few months either, I'm wondering if I have acclimatised now and my feet don't feel the cold. I'm quite happy to walk around outside at night, putting my washing out and I can stand on the cold wet concrete and hardly notice it.
I've been looking through the local road runners website deciding on the first race for the year. I don't do the City-Bay as there are too many people in it but there is another race in November, The Glenelg Classic that I might have a go at. It follows the path along the shore from Glenelg to West Beach and back, a run I have done a few times. That would be my first fully priced run if I did that.

Saturday, 1-Sep. 22km

Yay, first day of Spring and a clear blue sky greets me as I head to the beach. There is a bit of a chilly north east breeze blowing but the wind is much reduced from Thursday. The tide was out as far as it was going to get today, I had plenty of sand to run on. I felt quite relaxed on the run up to Semaphore. I was a bit more tired on the way back or maybe I just thought I was. I think I should be running faster but I'm already going at a good pace and this is meant to be an endurance run not a speed run. I still haven't cracked the 2 hours so I'm not going to increase my distance until that happens. We have a 25C day next week before the temperature drops once again later in the week. Tomorrow is the monthly run for the Adelaide Barefoot group, but I'm only expecting one to turn up. I've not had much more recognition from runners since the article in the paper.

Sunday, 2-Sep. 8.2km

Well, a lone barefoot runners meet this month. I went to the gym at 9am as I had scheduled the run for 10.30am. I did some back exercises and some legs. As I run more than do weights my legs feel weak when it comes to the weights. I'm not lifting super heavy or anything but even what was my starting weight now feels heavy. I didn't want to do to much or my legs would seize up on the run. I think the barefoot running builds the calves and leaves the quads and hamstrings as they are not the main muscle to stabilise the foot.
After the gym I headed out to the car park by the lake to see if anyone would turn up, the time ticked past 10.30am and no one appeared so I set off. I didn't have my sports watch on so I took what I thought was an easy pace, I was in no rush. My feet got a bit tender on the last couple of km. We had our first warmer day of spring, the concrete was no longer cold I could feel the warmth on my soles, before too long I'll be worrying about burning my feet.